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Harry Reid’s wife to begin physical therapy after crash


Mona Shield Payne / Special to the Sun

Sen. Harry Reid attends a dedication ceremony with his son, Key, and wife, Landra, April 9, 2009, at the John C. Kish Boys & Girls Club in Henderson.

Updated Friday, March 12, 2010 | 3:42 p.m.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's wife is in good spirits and could be released from the hospital in the next few days after undergoing neck surgery this morning at a Washington, D.C., area hospital following a serious, multi-vehicle car crash, officials said.

Landra Reid, 69, could begin physical therapy this afternoon and her doctor said he believes no further surgeries will be needed.

The senator plans to continue his re-election campaign.

"His plans have not changed at all," a spokesman said.

The senator remained at his wife's side at the Northern Virginia hospital for most of the day as she underwent surgery that lasted several hours. The Senate was not in session.

"The tremendous concern and support for Landra and Lana from people across Nevada and across the nation have deeply touched our entire family," the senator said in a statement. "We greatly appreciate your thoughts during this difficult time. Landra and I have been married for 50 years. She is the love of my life, and I look forward to her making a full recovery as quickly as possible.”

Reid's wife and daughter, Lana Reid-Barringer, 48, were rear-ended Thursday afternoon by a semi-truck on busy Interstate 95 in Fairfax County.

Landra Reid was in serious condition after suffering a broken neck, broken back and broken nose. His daughter suffered facial lacerations and neck injuries, and was released from the hospital Thursday night.

Dr. Elizabth Franco said at a hpspital press conference this afternoon that Landra Reid's "prognosis for recovery is actually very good." She faces essentially no risk of paralysis, the doctor said.

Reid's spokesman said the senator was "quite relieved" following the surgery.

The senator received word of the crash during a 2:15 p.m. conference call with rural Nevada reporters. He left the Capitol to go to the hospital, then returned to his office in the evening as health care talks continued.

The senator returned to the hospital Thursday evening and stayed until nearly midnight. He was back at the hospital this morning by his wife's side, his office said.

Lana is the oldest of Reid's five children and his only daughter. His four sons were all en route to the Washington area.

President Barack Obama called the senator Thursday night to check on Reid's family. Fellow senators, Nevada lawmakers and at least two candidates challenging Reid in his re-election this fall also sent their support. Republican candidate Sue Lowden said she would suspend her campaign ads.

The Reids are high school sweethearts who celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last year.